Development and Evaluation of a Brief Questionnaire to Assess Dietary Fat Quality in Low-income Overweight Women in the Southern United States

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To develop a brief questionnaire to assess dietary fat quality, the Dietary Fat Quality Assessment (DFQA), for use in dietary counseling to reduce heart disease risk.


A subsample of 120 underserved, midlife women enrolled in a randomized, controlled weight loss trial completed baseline and follow-up telephone surveys. Main outcome measures included dietary fat components (total fat, saturated fat, polyunsaturated fat, monounsaturated fat, omega-3 fatty acids, and cholesterol).


Assessments of major dietary fat components using the DFQA and a food frequency questionnaire were significantly correlated, with correlation coefficients of 0.54–0.66 (P < .001). Intra-class correlation coefficients to assess reliability ranged from 0.48 to 0.59 for each of the fat components studied.

Conclusions and Implications:

The DFQA provides a reasonable assessment of dietary fat quality associated with coronary heart disease risk and may prove useful as a brief assessment tool to guide dietary counseling given to reduce heart disease risk.

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